PULLMAN, Wash. (ABC4 Sports) – The Utes finally broke through on the road in Pac-12 play.
Five players in double-figures led by a double-double from Branden Carlson as the Utes raced out to a 17-point halftime lead and rolled past Washington State on the road, 71-56.
The win snapped a 12-game road-losing streak in Pac-12 play for the Utes while also extending its win-streak against the Cougars to 13. The last time Utah won a road conference game was at WSU back on Feb. 23, 2019, a 92-79 affair.
Carlson had 14 points and 10 rebounds, Timmy Allen added 13 points, while Riley Battin and Alphonso Plummer each had 12 for the Utes, who improved to 6-6 overall, 3-5 in the Pac-12.
Mikael Jantunin also scored in double figures, finishing with 10 points.
Utah shot the lights out in the first half, making 67 percent of its shots (18 of 27) from the field in racing out to a 43-26 lead.
Carlson had a fantastic start for the Utes, scoring the first two baskets and led the team with 12 first-half points on 4-of-5 shooting.
The Utes also did a great job sharing the ball, assisting on 12 of the 18 made shots in the first 20 minutes of action – six of which came from the hands of the Utah floor general Rylan Jones.
Utah cooled down a little bit in the second stanza, shooting just 41.7-percent (10-of-24) from the floor but still outscored the Cougars 30-28. The Ute defense continued to play at a high-level and held WSU (9-5, 2-5 Pac-12) to just 37.7-percent from the field compared to their 54.9 percent.
Washington State got as close as 14 points of Utah a couple times mid-way through the second frame, but Jones was wheeling and dealing Thursday night and dished out a season-high 10 assists – one shy of tying his career-high set last season against Mississippi Valley State at home. The Holladay, Utah, product is just the fifth player in the Pac-12 this season to dish out double-digit dimes in a single-game.
Carlson wrapped up his night with a team-best 14 points and 10 boards, the first double-double for Utah this season and first since Timmy Allen’s double-double versus USC on Feb. 23, 2020. Allen finished with 13 points of his own with six assists.
Riley Battin found his groove in Pullman, tying his season-high with 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting. Plummer went 5-of-9 from the field for his 12 points.
Utah now heads to Seattle with a couple days rest before facing off against Washington on Sunday, Jan. 24, at 2:00 p.m.